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Congratulations Nicola Spence, CBE


Congratulations to Mount Old Scholar Nicola Spence (1972-75) PhD, who was awarded a CBE from King Charles III last week for her services to plant health.

As Chief Plant Health Officer (CPHO) and Deputy Director, Plant and Bee Health for the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Nicola leads the fight to prevent plant and bee disease from entering the country. She advises ministers, industry and others about the risks posed by plant pests and diseases, and ensures that measures are in place to manage those risks and minimise their impact.

Nicola had been named in the late Queen’s last-ever New Year’s Honours List 2022.

I am surprised and very honoured to have been recognised. I’d like to thank my brilliant colleagues at Defra, and those in the UK Plant health service as well as the wider plant health community, for their support and professional expertise. It is an exciting time for plant health as we plan to launch a new GB Plant Biosecurity Strategy in 2022 and continue to work with industry, stakeholders and the public on improving plant biosecurity. It is a privilege to continue to serve as Chief Plant Health Officer, protecting out precious plants and trees from pest and disease threats.

Nicola represents Old Scholars on The Mount’s governing committee and until recently was a Trustee The Mount School York Foundation.

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